This morning, I woke up early in order to be downtown at 7 a.m. -- it was still dark outside when I rubbed the crusted sleep out of my eyes. My hair whipped me in the face as I stretched each arm heavenward. I showered and dressed in a hazy half-sleep. I pulled my chin up and pulled my hair back, just before I walked out the door.
As I backed out of the driveway, drops of rain danced upon the hood of the car. Just before backing into the street, I inserted Jack Johnson into my CD player, turned on the headlights and flipped on the windshield wipers. On the freeway, there were only a few cars. The road was shining from all of the water on its surface. A giant black mirror I hoped would tell my fortune or whisper that I was the fairest. The wipers going back and forth, back and forth across the window, created a rythmn that seemed to match that of the mello surf music washing over the interior. I concentrated on the road ahead, searching for my exit.
After exiting the freeway, I made my way along a road that ran parallel to South Mountain. With all of the seasonal rain, South Mountain's rolls were covered with green, wall to wall shag carpeting of grass. A sajauro, here and there along the mountainside, would glimmer in the sun's peeking light. It tried to push through the purple clouds with all its might, but the clouds would not give. The rain remained.
I arrived in a poor area of Phoenix, parked in front of a church. Pulled together buildings attempted to have the semblance of homes. Unmatched sides, tin roofs and multi-colored bricks formed squares with triangular tops. This morning, the church was going to be serving breakfast to its neighbors. My task was to interview the clients being served by the church in order to gather information for a survey on hunger. Another volunteer was to meet me there to assistant in the task. For 45 minutes, I waited in the car as rain baptized my car. I listened to the music...intently, it brought to me the sounds of the ocean and the smell of salt. I missed the ocean this morning. I missed its comfort.
In my waiting time, I read the sweet words of a novel. The languid lines on the page rolled over the palate of my mind and left a luxurious taste in my mouth and through every cell of my body. With the meditation of the falling drops and the whirling, swirling of the music's melody, I became lost in the moment. All time stopped, but at the same time the clock's hands hurried forward without allowing me to catch up. It was almost 8 a.m. when I looked at my watch. No one had yet arrived at the agency.
I was jerked from my literary nirvana. What should I do? I lifted the cell phone to my ear and called the coordinator. "Go home if they aren't there. It's okay. I will contact the agency in the morning." I walked out into the rain. Tat-tat-tat--the water pelted down on my windbreaker. The other volunteer rolled down his window and I told him we could leave. A droplet landed on my eyelash. I let it stay for a while before brushing it off. In my head, I bid the drop adieu while I walked back to my car.
Knowing my route, I made my way back home. The rain kept me in a daze, aware only of the road and the cars around me. As I pulled out onto the freeway, I could almost drive home by braille. I have driven this route so many times. I kept my eyes open wide, looking for breaks in the clouds. None appeared. Jack's voice began to sing "Taylor" to me. The rah-tah-tah-tah-tah of the tune lightly tapped at my temple. This is what morning should be like. This is the kind of glorious meditation that should be saved for Sunday. This is the kind of day, I could be certain was stirred and created by God.
Only He would know how to make a moment, a morning, as perfect as this.
How am I supposed to look forward to a day of thesis work now?
Letting the Days Go By
2 weeks ago